Trip Notes with Robert Criscola: Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Trip Notes 9/12/17

Racing resumed at Belmont this past weekend, and we have a pair of races to go over from there. We’ll also pay a visit to Kentucky Downs and review a race from Wednesday’s card.
Wednesday
Kentucky Downs Race 8: #2 FLATLINED
FLATLINED was off last in the Tourist Mile, Wednesday’s feature at Kentucky Downs. He and Joe Rocco Jr. got little help from race dynamics, as the opening fractions were brutally slow (26.02, 52.62). FLATLINED was still last with a quarter mile remaining and was forced to go five-wide into the stretch. Despite this, he closed like a shot down the long Kentucky Downs stretch to get into the exacta behind #7 APPLICATOR, who was forwardly-placed.
With a little luck next time out (and perhaps a little more distance), FLATLINED could pick up his third stakes win of the year.
Friday
Belmont Race 4: #10 NUTZFORBOLTZ
NUTZFORBOLTZ will probably be no great secret in his next start, as he was second beaten just a neck in here, but the chart underplayed the misfortune he encountered.
John Velazquez restrained NUTZFORBOLTZ early, attempting to save his mount’s energy for one late run. As some of the opposition began to lose position the bend, Velazquez decided to wait for a lane to appear rather than take the overland route. NUTZFORBOLTZ entered the stretch two-wide, but in spite of Velazquez’s best efforts, he was forced to steer his mount out to the five-path with about a furlong to go. That loss of momentum is without a doubt the reason SHAMCAT was able to hold off NUTZFORBOLTZ for the victory.
NUTZFORBOLTZ was in for a tag here after a rough summer against allowance foes at Saratoga. He might be able to handle the class hike at Belmont if placed there later in the meet. He’d certainly be a better price if moved up the class ladder.
Saturday
Belmont Race 2: #5 SOLID
SOLID appeared to be green in his first ever start, coming out of the gate slowly. Manny Franco was busy with the reins early and seemed to be fighting with SOLID in an attempt to keep him running straight. 
SOLID took the turn well while three-wide and responded to Franco’s cues in the stretch, splitting rivals at the 1/16th pole with relative ease. SOLID crossed the wire a game third in his debut beaten just three lengths by horses with prior experience; he can surely move forward off this.

2 thoughts on “Trip Notes with Robert Criscola: Tuesday, September 12, 2017”

  1. Flatlined CAN be a very good play – just use some discretion when evaluating the company he is keeping for the race. His signature win @Gulf in the Daytona was great, but he seemed in too deep of waters for about 4 races following his win. I had Flatlined to win and the trifecta, but to no avail – Applicator stayed on. Good stuff from Kentucky Downs.

  2. Just wanted to let you know how much my husband and I love your handicapping info! Thanks for your awesome insight!

    Steve and Susan

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